So here's the thing: This month's fundraiser has been kind of a bust. And, the truth is, every fundraiser since November, back when everyone kicked in so I'd keep the blog open, has gotten gradually worse. I'm back to doing this for less than minimum wage.
Because the question has come up in comments again, let me just reiterate: For this blog and community to be run as a safe space, it is a full-time job, and it also means, for reasons I've previously explained, that I cannot subsist on ad revenue. Just as there is a "misogyny tax," there is a tax to be free from misogyny and all other forms of bigotry; there's a cost to providing a safe space. Traditional sources for monetizing a blog are not an option: Content-generated ads (like Google Ads) frequently yield ironic advertisements—diet plans on fat acceptance threads, and anti-gay ads on pro-gay threads. BlogAds ad submissions have to be turned down which feature sexualized imagery of women, language that breaks the commenting rules, or endorsements of companies that are union-busting or bigoted.
This community can't expect me to run a safe space and get paid for my work in this space from somewhere else. That's just the reality.
I'm tired of begging. I'm sure you're tired of me begging, too. But six months on from my walking away because I was exhausted and broke and ever being asked to provide more more more, I'm back in exactly the same place. Maybe everyone assumes that everyone else is filling the pot, but that isn't happening. I've held up my end of the bargain, but the same is not being done in return. I think you can imagine how much admitting that pains me.
The deal is: If you want to see Shakesville stay in business and run as a safe space, you've got to kick in. And if you want me to feel as though what I do here every day has value to the community, you've got to kick in. And if you don't want this space to be yet another place where a woman's service work is devalued just because it can be, then you've got to kick in.
Thank you to the people who have donated this month, or any other.